Inbound marketing allows you to make real connections with your current and potential customers, offering them what they already want-here's everything you need to know to use this method to your advantage.

Inbound marketing: are probably two words you find just about everywhere, hanging out on the Web or reading some online guide on how to get more customers for your business.

As you say, it's actually not really clear to you at 100% what it means?

In fact, it falls among those English terms that are now popularized in our language, but whose meaning we sometimes ignore (or, at least, we always have some small doubt about it).

Perfect, if you find yourself in it, you are reading the right article: you are about to find out what inbound marketing is, what it is and how it works, as well as the methodology behind it and its main benefits.

Happy reading!

What is inbound marketing

Okay, let's assume that you have your own business (online or offline, it doesn't matter) and that you are trying to figure out how to find new customers and keep them, with the goal of Increase sales and grow your business.

There are two main avenues you can take: bombard your audience with ads and banner ads, hoping that there will be someone out there who decides to click on them at some point, or offer people something interesting, to the point of Invite them in a spontaneous way to come to you.

Because think about it: your customers are such from the moment you provide them with solutions to their problems.

Do you agree?

Here, this is exactly what inbound marketing is all about: provide the solutions your target audience is looking for.

So what does "inbound" mean? Literally, it means "inward"-referring to anything that is moving inward, precisely, or coming from another direction.

But what exactly is it then?

Inbound marketing is a real business method and a strategic approach, which has a specific goal: to attract customers by creating valuable content and experiences tailored to them, which represent solutions to their needs and thus stimulate long-term relationships.

Such solutions can come in the form of different types of content on various platforms designed to make you connect more "spontaneously" and naturally with potential buyers at different stages of the buying journey.

In fact, the idea is to accompany people throughout the entire process, from the moment they first come in contact with your brand until they become loyal customers, rather than having to seek them out and compete for attention through outbound marketing.

In other words, inbound marketing focuses on what the audience wants, and that is why it is effective: it makes it easier for them to find the solution to their needs.

How inbound marketing works: the method

The inbound methodology then allows you to grow your business by building meaningful and lasting relationships With consumers and potential customers. It is about valuing and helping these people achieve their goals at any stage of their relationship with you.

How come? Because when your clients succeed, you succeed.

While marketing so-called "outbound" goes in search of those who might be interested in your offer, inbound marketing focuses on visibility and making sure they come to you.

How? 

Using different techniques: content marketing, blog, SEO, social media... 

One of the first things to consider is to understand your audience and what they expect from you as a brand.

You may prefer a content-focused approach, publishing posts and videos that align with customers' key interests; or you may opt for a lead nurturing approach, which focuses on building a connection through a mutual exchange.

But always with a lowest common denominator: being oriented to build brand awareness, do lead generation And develop relationships.

The goal is to attract new potential customers to your company, interact with them on a large scale, and satisfy them individually.

Specifically, to do this, the inbound method is based on four steps:

  • the phase of attraction (attract), focused on attracting potential customers through targeted marketing;
  • the conversion phase (convert), in which you turn your users into leads, i.e., contacts; 
  • the closing phase (close), where you focus on closing the sale;
  • the final stage (delight), where you consolidate the relationship with all those who have interacted with you, to increase the loyalty.

All four stages are crucial: let us briefly look at them in detail.

The 4 stages of inbound marketing

inbound marketing

#1 Attract

At this stage the goal is. Attract your potential customers to your website, with the idea that they will then become regular users and eventually active buyers.

This is through valuable content and conversations that meet their needs, problems and desires and make you a trusted brand they want to interact with.

So green light to high-quality content production, search engine optimization (SEO) and good social media marketing.

#2 Convert

Once visitors have found your website, you need to build a relationship with them and turn them into leads, that is, in contacts.

Gathering information from potential customers is the key to initiating an interaction, helping to keep them engaged and leading to a successful conversion.

The methods you can use are those that allow you to create a connection with users by providing something of value for which they are willing to share their personal information (usually, name and email address) with you.

Necessary tools in this case are therefore the landing page, where users can download your offer or sign up for your service, and the call to action, with which you communicate the next action to be taken.

#3 Close

The "closing" phase is where you drive leads to the final purchase decision.

Components of this step include lead nurturing (through various tools, such as e-mail, you can nurture potential customers at every stage of their decision-making journey), marketing automation, and customer relationship management (CRM) software to better organize and access their data.

#4 Delight

Even after making the sale, you must continue to engage and satisfy your customer base to build relationships with them and Turn them into promoters of your business.

This phase carries considerable weight in inbound methodology, although it is sometimes easily overlooked: yet, retaining a customer is easier than constantly acquiring new ones.

So it's a matter of incentivizing the exchange on social and responding to interactions with useful and supportive information, showing that you care about your audience and are not just trying to sell; using loyalty programs and surveys to support, assist and satisfy customers by gathering feedback is another great way to strengthen relationships.

The benefits of an inbound marketing strategy

Inbound marketing is so powerful because you have the benefit of giving consumers exactly the answers they are looking for, at the precise moment they need them. This builds trust, reputation and authority In whatever niche you are practicing this strategy.

If executed correctly, inbound marketing can therefore produce significantly better results than a more traditional approach.

Here are the main advantages:

  • optimizes social media shares, brand awareness and search engine optimization efforts;
  • provides your potential customers with all the information they need to make a buying decision anytime, anywhere;
  • allows for a more streamlined and targeted advertising spend, so you can save money and experience a ROI higher over time;
  • gives you more trust and credibility (when you allow customers to do their own research and find you organically, you find yourself more trustworthy than an advertisement that says "Buy it now!");
  • creating useful content and social sharing help reduce the amount of risk consumers associate with your brand;
  • attracts quality traffic and leads (with a more targeted and informed approach, you are able to attract contacts who are more likely to be interested in your solutions);
  • provides you with opportunities for learning and evolution (interacting with customers on social media and listening to their conversations, questions and feedback helps you understand how to improve your products and services).

Conclusion

Inbound marketing works because it is based entirely on what customers want and what they are looking for at that moment.

It's not about "bombarding" your audience with your brand, it's about being present and ready when they are looking for the things you offer. Successful inbound marketing occurs when you produce high-quality content that your target audience actually interacts with.

Before closing, always remember one important thing: It's never just about sales.

It is a strategy that has to do with Being concretely useful: your inbound marketing content must have within it the potential to help people solve their problems, generate repeat traffic to your Web site, and stimulate promotion of the word of mouth For your brand.

If you do it right, the resulting brand awareness and engagement will result in sales conversions and strong, lasting relationships with your customers.